Profile For Rico

Rico's Info

  • Location:
    Rockport, IN

  • Driving Status:
    Rookie Solo Driver

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    10 years, 2 months ago

Rico's Bio

I am a middle aged, soon to be divorced, pot-bellied fella who has wanted to become a truck driver since I watched Smokey and The Bandit way back in 1977. Over the years I tried making my dream come true several times but one thing after another got in the way. Well, things have finally come together in such a way that that dream is coming to pass. Timing is everything in life, and my time has come!

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Posted:  9 years, 7 months ago

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Rookie truck drivers, what would YOU do? #2

Calling dispatch was my first thought. They almost always have more information available to them on what is and isn't acceptable when making deliveries. It might be that, at 42 degrees, the temp has already gone past what's acceptable for WalMart. I think opting to get the reefer fixed before delivering the load would make a bad situation worse, given the short distance to the store and how close it is to the scheduled delivery. If 42 degrees is still within WM's guidelines, I'd get the load delivered ASAP and then go get the reefer fixed.

Posted:  9 years, 7 months ago

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Going Local

Well, it appears that I am going to go local sooner than I thought. The last two weeks have brought some changes to my life I wasn't expecting. My father passed away last week, and something I won't discuss publicly happened to one of my daughters. We are going to move into my father's house, give our house to our son, and get our daughters out of the environment they're in. I go back out OTR on Monday, but only until the end of this month, the middle of next month at the latest. There's a company interested in hiring me that hauls fuel and coal. I can start out at the terminal close to where I live now and transfer to the one that's where my dad's house is in the Spring.

Do any of you know much about hauling coal or fuel? I know that pulling a tanker is a different kind of driving than a van, with the surge and all. I'm kinda looking forward to pulling a shorter trailer with a day cab, but I've heard that coal mine roads can be really rough. Other than that, I really don't know what either is like, so any information y'all could provide would be appreciated.

Posted:  9 years, 7 months ago

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Entertainment out on the road

I play my guitar, watch TV, surf the web. Sometimes I just sit in the truck and watch other drivers' backing maneuvers. I saw one fella do a complete backwards u-turn into a parking spot three other drivers gave up on. I thought my jaw was gonna hit the steering wheel. I hope I'm that good someday. Mostly though, I end up getting in the bunk and going to sleep, especially on the 14 hour days. It's amazing how tiring driving a truck can be.

Posted:  9 years, 8 months ago

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Are trucking companies switching to automatic transmissions?

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The industry is not switching to auto's. Sure, one company out of a thousand might use them but the industry is dominated by manual and it will stay that way. Manuals provide more control of the vehicle especially in mountainous terrain, also, auto's are pricey to maintain mechanically.

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how much control does one have of the vehicle when going down a mountain and missing a gear? autos eliminate that problem altogether.

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With auto trannys you can still roll down a hill to fast. You still burn up brakes going down hill. You can still blow the engine if the rpms get to high. Yep automatic trannys can do all that except it does shift for ya.

The point is that an auto will always keep you in a gear. None of this ending up in neutral and in big trouble going down a mountain.

Posted:  9 years, 8 months ago

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Are trucking companies switching to automatic transmissions?

I'm sorry, but give me a thirteen speed any day, I learnt on them and drove them, and loved the tranny, Yes especially in the Northeast. If I remember correctly? If you take your test in an auto you are licensed for an auto and not a Manual.?

depends on the state you live in

Posted:  9 years, 8 months ago

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Are trucking companies switching to automatic transmissions?

The industry is not switching to auto's. Sure, one company out of a thousand might use them but the industry is dominated by manual and it will stay that way. Manuals provide more control of the vehicle especially in mountainous terrain, also, auto's are pricey to maintain mechanically.

how much control does one have of the vehicle when going down a mountain and missing a gear? autos eliminate that problem altogether.

Posted:  9 years, 8 months ago

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Are trucking companies switching to automatic transmissions?

It's happening more and more. Conway is buying all autos. The guys I've talked to that have them, love them. Many of them have told me that they didn't think they'd like an auto until the first time they got stuck in traffic and didn't have to shift a hundred times. Or the first time they climbed and went down a mountain without having to shift. Honestly, I'm surprised that it's taken this long for autos in big trucks to become more popular.

Posted:  9 years, 8 months ago

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Are Truck Drivers patient with Rookies when during backing?

I had some trouble with this in the Northeast. I take my time when backing, and have no problem getting out to look as many times as it takes to get it right. I pulled into a Pilot in MA one night, and started having some trouble because I couldn't see. The radio came alive with insults and general ribbing of the rookie. I just shut the radio off. I'm not in this to impress anyone with how easily I get the truck into a spot on the first try. I've had a chance to watch quite a few guys backing into spots, and most of us need pull ups and do overs, so we're pretty much all in the same boat when it comes to backing--no one gets it perfect every time. It does feel good when I get it in on the first try though.

Posted:  9 years, 8 months ago

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Doing The Speed Limit .. Or Not?

My trainer and I had some issues over this speeding thing. We got into California, and I kept the truck at 55. He tried his best to get me to speed, but I wouldn't do it. I had to repeatedly tell him that it's my license, my record, and I wasn't going to risk getting a ticket. Finally, after two days of him trying to guilt and goad me into going faster, he told me he respected my decision to stick to the speed limit.

What annoys me are the drivers who think it's OK to go 60 in a construction zone that has a 45 mph posted limit. Drivers who do that are asking for trouble. Twice now, I've had guys behind me get on the cb to get on my case about sticking to the speed limit in construction zones, and twice I've responded with "I obey what the signs say."

I'm very much a stick to the speed limit kind of person. That's how I drive my four wheeler, and see no reason to drive any differently in the big truck. There have been times that I've let the truck go faster, like when I'm going downhill and there's an uphill ahead, but I never set my cruise to deliberately go faster than the posted limit.

Posted:  9 years, 9 months ago

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Trouble in paradise.

Thanks, Brett. I appreciate it. :)

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